Greek Writers’ Festival

Alpha POP
7-27 Circular Quay West, The Rocks

Presented by the Greek Festival of Sydney and UTS Creative Writing

The 38th Greek Festival of Sydney is devoting a day to presentations of newly-published books in English by Greek Australian writers. Although very different in style and content, all the books are united by common themes of migration, displacement and identity.


‘A memoir spanning four generations from war, horror and loss, to peace, calm and love. My mother, a Polish, Ashkenazy Jewish girl, and my father, a Greek Sephardic Jewish man, would never have met if they hadn’t both experienced the attempted extermination of their race at Auschwitz and Mauthausen. From the horrors of the concentration camps emerged love and kindness. They came to Australia as refugees, bringing two cultures, 13 languages and me – their firstborn – to forge a new beginning. They knew and taught me that we cannot move on without forgiveness.’ Nina will discuss her book with Dr Alfred Vincent.


Peter Papathanasiou’s parents emigrated from Greece to Australia in 1956 but were unable to have children. Finally, Peter’s uncle and aunt in Florina in northern Greece offered to give their baby to his parents to raise in Australia. Peter was that baby, born in 1974. Peter grew up an only child, finally discovering his true parentage in 1999 when his mother revealed the secret. This is where the story begins. Join Peter and journalist and academic Helen Vatsikopoulos, also from Florina, to discuss this moving story of family, culture and place.


Costas Taktsis wrote his famous novel Το τρίτο στεφάνι (The Third Wedding) largely in Australia, and dedicated it to his friends and supporters, artists Carl and Jocelyn Plate. Monster and Colossus is a work of narrative non-fiction, based on over 100 letters between Costas Taktsis and Carl Plate, along with two women in their lives – Jocelyn Plate and her mother Clarice Zander. Professor of Modern Greek Vrasidas Karalis, writer Cassi Plate and guests examine the nexus between writing and painting, during the era of post-war modernity and cosmopolitanism, when Costas Taktsis wrote his novel. 


Join author Jorge Sotirios, Professor Vrasidas Karalis and the journalist Mark Davis (Dateline) in the launch of Graffiti over Marble. Covering the Greek crisis, Sotirios reports on the human cost of a turbulent drama occurring on the streets, inside homes, at the workplace and in the cafes. From the city to the regions, from the islands to the borders, a portrait emerges of a nation under siege. Greece and the European continent are living in a time of uncertainty, having to deal with economic decline, the Neo-Nazi menace and the refugee influx impacting the ravaged middle class.

This event has been postponed.